If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. 2 Thessalonians 3:10
If you knew that Jesus Christ would return in seven days, would you go to work this week? It’s a fascinating question because it gets to the root of what we really think about our daily work.
A secular view of work says that it is simply a means of getting money. How much money do I need to make before I’m done with work and off to the beach or the golf course? Work is a means to an end, and that end is money.
If this is your view of work, your answer to the question is obvious: “If I knew Jesus was returning in seven days, of course I wouldn’t go to work. I have enough money for the week, so why go to work?” This seems to be what was happening in the city of Thessalonica.
Some people were so certain Jesus was about to return that they quit their jobs, “Christ is coming. There’s no reason to work.” The problem was not that these people didn’t have work. They were “not willing to work” (3:10), and they made a virtue out of not working. It isn’t hard to imagine how this could spread: “Do you have the faith to give up your job?”
“[Those who refuse to work] we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to… earn their own living” (3:12). If you think work is only a means of making enough money to get yourself on the beach or the golf course, please think again. This is not a Christian view of work.
How would you describe your view of work?